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Needs Analysis and Diagnostic Test Results Yet, as a result of my ongoing professional development and current teaching context, i. Having taught mainly English for Academic Purposes over the last two years, I have observed a number of specific features related to this specialism, i.
Finally, since the majority of my current students need help in developing academic writing skills, I have decided to design a syllabus for an EAP writing course.
Firstly, learners who are preparing to enter an English-speaking university often come from various educational backgrounds, and differ in terms of expectations or academic culture Jordan, For example, there may be significant differences in tutor-student relationships, different marking systems, or independent learning strategies.
From my experience, international students studying on EAP courses often feel overwhelmed by the surrounding academic conventions, which can lead to e. For example, in a number of countries in Asia, it is not unusual to quote from books without acknowledging the source Jordan, Other important issues of usept writing a book EAP classes are the requirements.
In other words, learners are expected to become not only fairly proficient users of English but also learn the conventions of the locally expected Julia Kotula EAP Writing 3 academic style ibid. This often includes learning the structure and features of local academic texts or deploying particular academic vocabulary.
Some of the key elements of teaching EAP are the instruction of rhetorical functions and the analysis of text genres followed by understanding how academic texts and discourses work in specific contexts Alexander, Furthermore, some authors Alexander et al. In terms of writing pedagogy, Raimes in Canagarajah, distinguishes four schools: Initially, the dominant approach was that of the product Canagarajah, which involves familiarising students with a model and producing a piece of guided writing through analysing the language and structure.
In the reader-focused approach, i.
Experience-based reflection Based on my teaching experience, I feel that a key aspect of EAP writing instruction is to lead learners to notice the commonality and contrast between general English genres and academic English written text, in particular in the areas such as vocabulary, style, or cohesion and coherence.
Often, due to the range of specific disciplines, it is necessary to search for balance in general versus specific academic language teaching Alexander, ; Flowerdew and Peacock, Designing the course — research-based ideas In planning my course, there are a number of considerations.
One of them is related to teaching methodology. These will involve problem-solving tasks and consciousness raising activities.
In order to prepare students for third level academic writing, it seems beneficial to train students in analysing a variety of essay questions comparison, discussion, argument-led and providing a relevant answer. Therefore, I am planning to incorporate vocabulary and grammar extension activities.
This type of syllabus would provide an opportunity for the analysis of a variety of authentic academic texts. Part 2 — Needs Analysis Commentary Needs Analysis Generally speaking, researchers agree that in order to design a syllabus, needs analysis for the learners in question must be carried out and interpreted Nunan, ; Flowerdew and Peacock, ; Jordan, Finally, I have used various approaches to design my questionnaire, based on the principle that syllabi should reflect the various needs of the learners West, The students are aged between 22 and 32 and their nationality mix comprises 7 Kurdish, 1 Dutch and 1 Saudi Arabian, including 8 male and 2 female students.
All students in this class intend to progress to postgraduate study within the next year.
The students need to work on all aspects of their general English skills and knowledge and, given their intentions of studying further, require EAP input, particularly in terms of writing. Julia Kotula EAP Writing 7 observations so far, all students are highly motivated and respond well to a variety of tasks.
The test was assessed considering practical constraints, such as time and administration, as well as ensuring the basic principles of testing, i. To guarantee reliability, the test was marked by two qualified teachers with adequate recent standardisation training.
Diagnostic test results To analyse and evaluate the results, I applied marking criteria and writing descriptors for the University of Sheffield English Proficiency Test see Appendix 7 because such an analytic rating scale can produce reliable measurement Lumley,and help identify areas requiring support.
Course priorities Firstly, as a result of the questionnaire, I have identified a number of product-oriented goals, i. The common skills which learners wish to and need to improve are writing a paragraph and organising ideas, and a variety of essay structures and semi-formal styles.
This will be further discussed in Part 3.
According to the results of the diagnostic test, it seemed crucial for the students to develop the skill of clear and logical organisation of ideas and practise rhetorical patterns together with the grammar that supports them, e.
Due to time constraints, I have decided to prioritise the instruction of the areas identified in the diagnostic as weaker see Part 3: To ensure motivation, I will begin with the instruction of the genres which my learners find simpler comparison and wish to practise problem-solutionand move on to more complex genres discussion, argument.
This choice was influenced by the diagnostic test results where I identified a number of Grammar Accuracy weaknesses with which my students need support in order to improve their writing Table 5. This choice has been influenced by the Learning Preferences Questionnaire results which indicate that my students enjoy pair and group work and value problem-solving activities.
Generally speaking, the content of the proposed course covers:I highly recommend this book as a supplement to any writer's workshop program.
It provides great mini-lessons for 4 sub-areas of writing (Organization, Ideas & Content, Word Choice & Voice, and Conventions).Reviews: 2.
The USEPT runs over two days: Paper-based tests (Writing, Reading & Listening) one day; Paired Speaking Tests the next.
University English Staff are involved in marking the reading, writing and listening components and in conducting and marking the speaking interviews. As well as the academic focus classes, there are exam preparation classes (IELTS, FCE, CAE, as well as the USEPT, which is the ELTC’s equivalent to IELTS and, along with IELTS, is accepted as an entrance requirement) and General English classes (e.g.
my own Upper Intermediate lot). Table 4: Diagnostic Test Results according to USEPT Writing Marking Criteria Student’s Name Content/Fluen Vocabular Grammar Overall cy/ y score Organisation Mahdi 48 50 45 47,67 Sadradin 43 49 43 45 Adil 53 55 50 52,67 Halmat 51 54 46 50,33 Bestoon 49 54 47 50 Masoud 55 57 52 54,67 Media 50 53 47 50 Julia Kotula EAP Writing 34 Ali Fout .
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